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Fix the hole in your skills toolset Vol 13-12 | June, 2011
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Most of the time it is not the technology you know, experiences you have or length of time you are in the workforce that influence your chances of progressing in your career.  It usually comes down to who you know.  You could be a hands down expert in virtualization or Exchange messaging solutions — but if you are missing the key ingredient of communication skills and developing relationships — you have a better chance of being passed over for that next job opportunity.

What can you do to build this area in your professional skillset? Participate in online forums instead of just looking for an answer. Find out if there is a local user group / professional association or regular IT Meetups in your area.  If there isn’t one — start one like the folks behind www.maritug.ca just did!  We can help with logistics and training — let us know about your existing or new groups ! The point is to get out there and talk with people about “things IT” to get yourself known. You’ll be one step closer to the next opportunity and you’ll be developing a support network of like-minded experts who will help you out in the future. 

I’m currently “down east” where infrastructure based user groups are hard to find — developer focused ones are dominant. Why is that? Are we taking our jobs in infrastructure IT as just that — “Jobs” and not owning up to our passion? Are we a group of professionals or just  skilled individuals who fix stuff? Come on out to some of the stops on the Virtualization Reality tour and find out.

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News in a Flash

Windows Client TechCenter

Your destination for technical resources, free tools, and expert guidance to ease the deployment and management of your Windows client infrastructure.
Download the Internet Explorer Administration Kit 9

The Internet Explorer Administration Kit (IEAK) 9 simplifies the creation, deployment, and management of customized Internet Explorer 9 packages. IEAK 9 can be used to configure the out-of-box IE 9 experience or to manage user settings after IE 9 deployment.
Microsoft Previews "Mango" Release of Windows Phone

The next version of Windows Phone, codenamed Mango, will feature a number of new capabilities and enhancements, including integration with Microsoft cloud platforms and services like Office 365 and Windows Live Skydrive, and unified communications via Lync Mobile. Watch the video demonstrating the new features, and check out the Windows Phone for IT Pros blog for an overview of the new business features that make it easier to connect and communicate.
Download Remote Server Administration Tools for Windows 7 with SP1

RSAT for Windows 7 with SP1 enables IT administrators to manage roles and features that are installed on computers running Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008, or Windows Server 2003, from a remote computer that is running Windows 7 or Windows 7 with SP1.
Upcoming end of support: Windows Vista SP1

Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) will reach the end of support on July 12, 2011. From that date onward, Microsoft will no longer provide support or free security updates for Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1). In order to stay secure and continue support you must upgrade to Service Pack 2 (SP2).

Community Events and webcasts

Virtual Reality Community tour

The truth about the Microsoft Virtualization Stack.   Join us at a city near you for a demo intensive 90 minute session that builds an interoperable virtualization solution from scratch and gives you the skills to bring this technology into your organization — even if you are already using a competing technology.
Vancouver-June 16

Join Microsoft MVPs Dana Epp and Charlie Russel as they explore the next generation of server solutions coming out from Microsoft.
Victoria-June 17

Join Microsoft MVPs Dana Epp and Charlie Russel ( and Jeff Middleton MVP, http://www.sbsmigration.com/ ) as they explore the next generation of server solutions coming out from Microsoft. To register, just send a reply to exec@viceug.com . It’s at Camosun College ( Lansdowne ), Fisher 200, Friday June 17 at 6:30pm.
Regina Code Retreat-June 12

Full day of pair programming, TDD, honing your skills with other geeks like you!
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